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Trip Doctor: New Index Ranks International Cities by Cost

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Newsflash: Oslo (pictured) is an expensive city.

Actually, according to a recent study by TripAdvisor, the Norwegian capital is the most expensive city for travelers. And while the priciest cities shouldn’t be too surprising (Oslo is followed by Zürich, Switzerland, and Stockholm, Sweden), the results are fascinating.

The website ranked 49 popular travel destinations around the world on a pricing index based on the relative costs of an evening out (cab rides, dinner, and drinks) and a one-night stay at a four-star hotel.

A dinner for two in Sofia, Bulgaria, including appetizers, entrees, and a bottle of wine, will run visitors around $40. In Oslo, that same meal would cost $276. Unsurprisingly then, Sofia came in as the least expensive city on the survey, with a total cost of $158.42. That’s barely more affordable than runner-up Hanoi, Vietnam ($176.14), but a staggering $400 under Oslo ($581.08).

Some other fun facts? Taxi rides are cheapest in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, where a round-trip ride costs one twentieth of what it does in London, England (where cabs are the priciest). And anyone looking to have fancy cocktails will want to venture to Cape Town, South Africa, where two drinks at a five-star hotel’s bar cost a grand total of just $8.85. The most expensive place to sip in style? Paris, France where two cocktails at a similar bar would leave you with $66.06 tab. I’ll stick to Cape Town.

See the complete results organized in TripAdvisor's infographic here.

Peter Schlesinger is a Research Assistant at Travel + Leisure.

Photo credit: Zoonar GmbH / Alamy

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